I'm not trying to be a hero! I'M FIGHTING THE DRAGON!!

Archive for the ‘Drama’ Category

Get Rich or Die Tryin’

Friday, September 15th, 2006

50 Cent, aka Curtis “Mumbles” Jackson, is not a rapper. I mean technically you might think he was one because he’s released rap albums. Pretty popular, too – the one this movie’s named after went six times platinum. But in a profile in Forbes magazine he talked about his albums and all his other products (a record label with all his buddies on it, a line of clothes, a line of Reebok sneakers, a flavor of VitaminWater, a video game, a ghost-written autobiography) as a continuation of the drug dealing he did starting at the age of 11. Just another hustle, another product.

When I read about his deal with Apple to sponsor a line of low-cost computers aimed at the inner city, I wondered if maybe he was smarter than he was letting on in all his music and interviews. Had he used his fame to give back to the community, strategically getting Apple to help the poor catch up technologically with the rest of American society and build a better future? Maybe, but he never mentions anything like that in the article. It ends with the quote, “I never got into it for the music. I got into it for the business.” (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Vern wants to tell you about Brian DePalma’s BLACK DAHLIA!!!

Friday, September 15th, 2006

Fellas –

Brian DePalma’s new picture has gotten alot of good reviews, but it’s the really harsh ones that stick with you. The Ain’t It Cool’s own MiraJeff was so mad he literally said he wanted to recreate the mutilations of the real crime on Brian DePalma. (Maybe he’s moody getting psyched up for his bout with the House of the Dead guy.) “Like high-school kids playing dress-up, or bad Kabuki,” is how David Edelstein described it in his capacity as film and apparently kabuki critic for New York Magazine. And a crazy person at the screening I went to announced during the credits that the movie had “nothing to offer to society,” had too much violence and smoking, and would flop at the box office.

Well, I wish I could give a more passionate defense, because I really have no idea where some of these people are coming from. But I also thought that as a DePalma fan (for here on referred to as “a DePalmaniac”) the movie was pretty underwhelming. It kept me interested, it has some great scenes, I even thought Michael Meyers’s nephew Josh Hartnett was surprisingly good playing the boxer/cop protagonist. But since DePalma’s last movie FEMME FATALE was pretty much The Ultimate 100% Unadulterated Brian DePalma Film, it’s a little disappointing to see him doing what seems like just his little spin on material that alot of other directors could’ve done almost as well. I’m guessing fans of the book, though, will be more interested. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

The Virgin Spring

Sunday, September 3rd, 2006

or Max Von Sydow’s Badass Revenge

Recently on The Ain’t It Cool News I reviewed this movie CHAOS, which is a rip-off of LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT (not on purpose, I am assured by the filmatists) which itself was an update of THE VIRGIN SPRING. One of the talkbackers, Readingwriter, was annoyed that I didn’t mention VIRGIN SPRING in the review. He had a good point that it would’ve been interesting to compare all three of them, not just those two, and I’m sure I would’ve done that if I had actually seen VIRGIN SPRING. But I hadn’t.

Until now. Today, I return to the topic armed with a new, more Swedish perspective of the classic revenge tale. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Hard Candy

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2006

If you read my LADY IN THE WATER review you might remember my tangent about a thing I saw on TV called “To Catch a Predator.” Well, HARD CANDY I guess must be the big screen adaptation of that show, but it also works as a prequel to X-MEN PART 3. Ellen Page, the girl who made a bitch out of Juggernaut, does the same thing here with a guy she believes is a pedophile. But instead of “Shadowcat” she’s called “Thong-Girl” and instead of walking through walls her power is tying up a guy and threatening to cut off his balls.

The trailer for the movie was really unsettling because it cleverly stuck to the first 20 minutes of the movie, when Thong-Girl seems to be an innocent 14 year old girl who thinks she’s more adult than she really is, getting in over her head by going to meet a much older guy she flirted with on the internet. The thing was creepy as hell because Ellen Page looks much younger than most horror movie victims, and the guy is a photographer who APPEARS to be a normal guy and therefore you figure must actually be a deranged pervert. You get the idea that the movie is sort of an I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE type scenario where the guy rapes her or tries to rape her, or she finds out he killed her friend, or something, and then she enacts a vicious revenge. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Vern explores the bizarre mystery that is Wesley Snipes in HARD LUCK…. and the Snipes-less BLADE tv series!

Sunday, August 13th, 2006

Hey folks, Harry here – with the latest from Vern. This time, Vern tackles the ever evolving career of one, Wesley Snipes. I miss Wesley Snipes. He was never just the muscle action guy and I kinda hate that THAT is what he’s becoming in these cheap straight to DVD flicks. Snipes is a dramatic actor of an immense amount of range. He just needs to calm down and begin straightening out a lot of the bad press he’s had – and just do the work. Put himself in some independent films – showing his range and humility and getting back to where filmmaker’s won’t be taking a “chance” directing him, but taking the OPPORTUNITY to use him. He’s incredibly talented, I just want to see that back on screen again. Here’s Vern to tell us if we see any of that talent in HARD LUCK…

HARD LUCK

Well boys, time for another chapter in the ongoing drama THE MYSTERY OF WESLEY SNIPES, where we explore why a talented individual who starred in the three hit BLADE movies keeps doing nothing but straight to video. This new one, HARD LUCK, comes to video in October. While it’s not a particularly good movie, and it definitely shouldn’t be released theatrically, it’s at least a step up from the generic and sometimes horrible DTV action movies he’s been doing lately. It’s kind of a quirky crime movie with some occasional funny touches and an unorthodox (but not revolutionary) structure. The big news is that it reunites him with NEW JACK CITY’s Mario Van Peebles, who is director, co-writer and co-star of HARD LUCK. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Wassup Rockers

Saturday, July 29th, 2006

I enjoy a good pervy Larry Clark movie, but I don’t know many people who do. But never fear. I am here to tell you that this is his most accessible because it’s a whole movie based around how likable the characters are instead of how despicable they are. You actually root for these guys. It’s incredible.

I’m not gonna lie to you. You still gotta get past the fact that Larry Clark is a creepy, dirty pervert. This movie opens with a video interview of one of its young stars that has the vibe of that infamous Calvin Klein kiddie porn commercial (in other words, this is a film by Larry Clark). The interview itself is great because the kid, Jonathan, is a non-actor talking about his life and some of the things he talks about we end up seeing re-enacted in the movie later. But you might be a little uncomfortable with the fact that he’s sitting on a bed with no shirt on talking to Larry Clark. Not the most savory individual to be hanging out in a kid’s bedroom. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Cockfighter

Thursday, July 6th, 2006

Well when you want a good sports movie you go to Monte Hellman, the fellow who also did the great racing movie Two Lane Black Top and Silent Night, Deadly Night 3. Now I know some of you from the title, you’re gonna say, “Oh, Vern’s reviewing a gay porno” but no, it’s about chickens.

I don’t know if you are familiar with cockfighting, cock is a term for rooster and what they do, they put two roosters in a circle and have them fight each other. Sometimes they put little metal hooks on their legs to make them more deadly. You know, it is basically like the dog fights we have up here but this is what they do in the south, because chickens are more readily available I guess. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Vern Has Studied THE SCIENCE OF SLEEP!!

Monday, June 19th, 2006

Hi, everyone. “Moriarty” here with some Rumblings From The Lab…

What a collision. Vern and Michel Gondry. Can’t wait to see how this goes:

Hey fellas,

I saw THE SCIENCE OF SLEEP which is the new Michel Gondry picture that comes out in September. It was the closing movie at the Seattle International Film Festival here. Michel Gondry was there to briefly introduce the movie, but didn’t do a question and answer session. Which is good because the first question probaly would’ve been, “what was that all about?”

Here’s the “where I’m coming from” paragraph, I’ll keep it brief. If you’re not into Michel Gondry then throw a grain of salt on this one, because I like every movie the guy has made. Yes, including HUMAN NATURE. I was the guy in the theater who was embarrassed because he couldn’t stop laughing and nobody else could start. To this day I think people didn’t give it a fair shake because they only had BEING JOHN MALKOVICH to compare it to. I honestly believe there will soon be a mass re-evaluation around the world where people decide they like HUMAN NATURE after all, now that they like Michel Gondry. If this does indeed happen then everybody has to buy me a Pepsi or something. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

McCabe & Mrs. Miller

Tuesday, May 16th, 2006

As part of my striving for excellence I’m trying to strengthen my background in the filmatic arts. I’m always trying to catch up on the Badass Cinema that I’ve missed, but it’s also important to watch some of the regular folk movies that are considered classics. MCCABE AND MRS. MILLER is no THE GODFATHER or nothin but if you talk to film buffs alot of times they have a boner for Robert Altman, and this is one of the movies they all mention. Before POPEYE. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.

Code of Silence

Tuesday, May 16th, 2006

In 1985, a couple years before director Andrew Davis introduced the world to Steven Seagal in the classic ABOVE THE LAW, he did another, similar movie, sort of a rough draft, starring Chuck Norris.

They have the same setting (Chicago), the same villain (Henry Silva) and alot of the same supporting actors playing cops and criminals. They have the same type of cheesy ’80s scores by David M. Frank. (Get ready for cheesy slap bass and the whitest horn section you ever heard.) ABOVE THE LAW is about CIA corruption (inspired by the Iran-Contra affair) but CODE OF SILENCE sticks with corrupt cops. (read the rest of this shit…)

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.